Category: Recipes


I love making this recipe. It is a simple one dish wonder meal and it brings back lovely memories of my Best friend. She was half Peurto Rican and her Fiancee was Mexican. Hence, the ambiguous origin of theis reicpe. She died in July of 2010. Suddenly, with no warning leaving 2 little girls ages 10 and 11. Her youngest’s birthday had been the week before.

Before we get to the recipe let me talk about taking care of ourselves as moms and women. We rush around taking care of kids, job home, volunteering, cleaning, church,  afterschool events, field trips you name it. We make the world operate and Mommas we tend to let it slip when it comes to ourselves. I am the number one offender in this category. I bake, cook, sometimes grind my own flours to make sure my kids have great food that will not make them sick. Yet, I am often to busy or too rushed to prepare my own lunches and end up grabbing fast food. Gluten filled fast food. And I pay. My skin breaks out in blotches, I itch all over, there is bloating, lethargy, abdominal pain, and just feeling gross.

Candice Kingsboro, the best, biggest hearted woman I’ve ever known is dead because she didn’t take care of herself. She took care of everyone else. She had diabetes and got the flu.  For the unfamiliar; when a person with poor insulin regulation gets ill it becomes a huge problem because part of being ill means fluctuating blood sugars. She took some over the counter cold and flu medicine. Her blood sugar sky rocketed in her sleep and she never woke up. The lady who held me together when I found myself newly single. Whose mother I helped care for whose kids were like family. Who welcomed anyone who needed friendship but took no crap; is gone because she didn’t check her blood sugar. She was too tired.

Ladies we have to do better. No more motherless children because we failed to take care of ourselves.

Though I go on about her being gone, the memories of cooking with her hanging out and having fun are enduring. They lift my heart. Candy is and will always be with us. Now she will be with you too.

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups white rice

1 15 oz can of golden corn

1lb package of chorizo or 1 lb smoked sausage, make sure it’s gluten free*

30-32 oz water

2 packages sodium free sazon

low sodium adobo to taste

It is important to use no sodium and no sodium seasonings in this recipe as chorizo can be very salty.

Stove top preparation

I use a dutch oven ( 5 qt pot) when making this and i some times double it.

Slice the meat in to small disks. Slice the whole pound up in this manner, set aside.

pour the dry rice into your pot.

add the corn and water

add the Sazon

lastly add the sausage stir well

Turn the meat to medium cook for 15 minutes. don’t stir.

Turn down to low or medium low check to see if more water is needed, continue cooking until rice is tender.

 

Rice cooker preparation

Lately I have been making this in the rice cooker because my rice cooker is always on. If there isn’t rice available in this house dinner take twice as long.

Prepare meat as above

Add rice, corn, and water to rice pot. You may need more water depending on your rice cookers instructions.

Add seasonings. let the rice cooker cook for 10 minutes then add the meat.**

**You may need to microwave the meat for a bit before adding it to the rice cooker**

Now just add a veggie and you’re done. Dinner in 30 min flat.

Okay here it is the much awaited oven baked macaroni and cheese. This is a main course.This is delicious. This is soooooo good.

it involves a bit of prep if you don’t keep  coconut milk cheeses on hand.  You will wonder how you lived so long with out real mac and cheese. My family loves it. ( all but the boy who doesn’t like anything “cheesy”, go figure) Since we do have a voice of dissent macaroni and cheese is not made and prepared as often as i would like but when i pull this 9×11 baking dish or goodness out of the oven, they are oo’s and ah’s. Hopefully you will get the same reaction when you prepare it.

Ingredients

1 package Daiya cheddar shreds ( 8 oz)

1/2 recipe for coconut milk Cheddar ( cut into 1 inch or smaller cubes)

1/4 recipe for coconut milk mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 16 oz package Tinkyada brown rice elbow macaroni

2-4 TBS Earth Balance buttery spread  soy free

season to taste. I use a dash of adobo and freshly ground peppercorns.

garnish with thinly sliced chives (optional)

9×11 baking dish ( i use Pyrex)

Indgredients

1.  Prepare elbow noodles on stove top as directed on package instructions.

2. Drain noodles,  pour into a large mixing bowl.

3. Set aside 1/4c -1/2 c daiya

4. Add remaining  non dairy cheeses,  non dairy butter,  and seasonings to mixing bowl. Toss thoroughly make sure seasonings are evenly spread throughout.

5. Pour mixture into 9×11 baking dish. Sprinkle reserved Daiya on top.

6. Bake for 30 min at 350 or until daiya is melted.

7. Remove from oven allow to cool slightly garnish with thinly sliced chives and enjoy.

What Macaroni and Cheese is NOT

America I have news for you Kraft Mac ‘n Cheese is NOT macaroni and cheese. Deluxe Shells and cheese with “cheese sauce” is not macaroni and cheese. If it comes in a box with powdered cheese or a package with “cheese sauce” it is not macaroni and cheese.

Macaroni  and Cheese uses elbow macaroni, Velveeta, cheddar and a small amount of mozzarella and provolone. You add in onion powder and garlic powder as well and white pepper ( to keep the cheese pretty) and  a touch of paprika. Put it in a dish bake it in the oven on 350. You may or may not want to garnish with bread crumbs.

Short and sweet, if it isn’t oven baked, if it comes pre packaged or in a box, if it is microwave safe it ain’t macaroni and cheese.

Ok stepping down off of my soap box.

My next recipe coming the weekend has Daiya cheddar, the previously shared coconut milk “Velveeta” , and a home-made mozzarella.

Over the summer I shared this wonderful velveeta type vegan cheddar “cheese”. What i failed to mention was how to make sure your cheese is smooth and creamy when sliced and doesn’t have little gelatin or agar agar clumps throughout. This is purely a cosmetic fix. It does not change to taste nor the ingredients. Trust me, this “cheese” is so good i would never do anything to alter the flavor.

Overall it is an easy peasy fix.

step 1. Vigorously shake your cans of coconut milk. This eliminates the need to boil until no longer separated because the product you now pour out of the can is combined.

step 2. In an empty medium sauce pan put all dry ingredients ( nutritional yeast, salt, paprika, gelatin or agar-agar, and tapioca starch.

Step 3. Stir the together well. It should look like a pale orange or yellow powder when evenly mixed.

Step 4. Now add your wet ingredients beginning with the coconut milk stirring the whole time.

Step 5. Now you bring the mixture up to a boil. Boil for 3-5 minutes stirring constantly.

Step 6. lower heat to medium and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes. If you encounter any clumps break them up by mashing them into the side of the saucepan with your stirring spoon then stir vigorously to reincorporate into the “cheese” mix.

Step 7.  Remove from pan and put in greased, flat-bottomed glass dish or parchment paper lined loaf pan. ( step 3 from original recipe)

Step 8. Let cool two hours. You can also stick in fridge when cool and use the next day ( step 4 from original recipe)

**Yes I am aware the gelatin is not a vegan ingredient. However I am not ona vegan diet and use what ever is in my cupboard at the time. 🙂

 

Yes I said cream of chicken soup. Home made. Perfect for your green bean casserole or that umph to your gluten free, soy-free, dairy free-dressing. No matter how many “frees” you have  to add, it must remain flavorful. It has to be good otherwise why go through the effort?????

So back to the creamy goodness.  Thanks to Heidi of adventures of a gluten free mom and Crystal of Everyday  food storage for the inspirations.

Like Heidi I found that all the dairy free powdered milks are sweet. Dairy free Magic Mix, with the slight sweetness,  can be made to work by adding vinegar to cut the sweetness but it still works best for meals where the  slight sweetness will blend well. Yet,  I did use the idea as a base for my cream of _____ blank soups.

We have recently switched to using low sodium Adobo. I didn’t even know they made low sodium and per the company it is gluten free too. Yay!! I love using Adobo for seasoning. In the past I used red top Adobo which has a great flavor and less sodium than Lawry’s seasoned salt. Now the low sodium is available in my area, it has a blue label and top. We’ve been using it for a week and have bee completely satisfied. For my family Sodium is a special concern As my mom has sodium sensitive high blood pressure. We have an extensive history of heart disease and death by heart attack.

In a way for us the allergies, Adhd and celiac have been a blessing. We knew how to eat better and would do so for several months and then get busy and fall off the band wagon. This was a cycle we had gotten into however with the various food related ailments that seemed spring up over night, we had to make a change. A permanent change. Cooking allergen free has cut our intake of sodium, bad cholesterol, unhealthy fats, and processed garbage drastically.

While coconut milk is high is in saturated fat it is a fat that our body needs and uses completely. It is not hanging around in our arteries waiting to kill us. It is cholesterol free and very low sodium.

Ingredients

1 can full fat coconut milk.

5 Tbs nondairy butter ( I use earth balance soy free spread)

5 Tbs Gluten free all purpose flour

1 C gluten free chicken stock ( I used home made stock)

½ tsp Adobo or less to taste.

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Add flour and stir until very thickened but smooth.

Shake the  can of coconut milk. Then open and pour the entire contents into the butter mixture.

Turn up heat to high and stir until smooth and thickened and slightly bubbly.. Add chicken stock or broth.

Stir, stir stir. Reduce heat to medium and continue stirring. The soup should be very thick ,like a pudding, it should pull away from the sides of your saucepan slightly when stirred.

Now, add the Adobo to taste.

**you can also finely chop up chicken breast lightly saute in olive oil with onion. Use large onion pieces that you can pull out. Once the onion is caramelized and chicken is well done remove the onion pieces. Add about ½ C of the diced chicken to the soup mix.

Every week I bake three Small loaves of bread using this recipe from The Baking Beauties.  It is a delicious multi-grain bread. For the whey powder I use almond meal and perfecto! The down side to baking gluten-free is that it is so expensive. Now when no one wants to eat the heel of the loaf I bemoan every dime wasted. There is, however, a solution.  We make a breakfast casserole from the heels. I save them up in the freezer in a gallon sized zip lock bag and after 2-3 week or 6-9 loaves (with 12-18 heels between them) I have enough heels for a pan of breakfast casserole. WHy the hub bub about breakfast casserole? It is FABULOUS!!!!! and it feeds a family of 5 breakfast for 2-3 days. Just warm it up, add fruit or juice and some beverage and ta-da. A full breakfast. I got my idea from The Gluten-Free Homemaker.

Ingredients

1 lb gluten-free breakfast sausage

1 medium bell pepper diced

1/3 red onion diced

chopped/cubed bread heels to cover the bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish

12 eggs

appx 1/4 c unsweetened non-dairy milk

Adobo to taste

1-2 tbsp oil for sauteing

Preheat oven to 375 farenheit

1. Saute bell peppers and onions in a large skillet over medium low heat. Simmer until onions become translucent.

2. Crumble sausage into the skillet with bell pepper onion mix. Cook over medium heat until meat is well crumbled and no longer pink.

3. Break dozen eggs in a large bowl, or the bowl of your stand mixer. Discard shells. Add non dairy milk and Adobo to taste. Beat on medium speed until eggs are somewhat foamy. Set aside.

4.  Cover th bottom of a 9×12 casserole dish with bread heels/cubes. Make sure meat, bell peppers and onions are well mixed. Use a spoon or spatula to evenly sprinkle meat mixture over the bread crumbs.

5. Evenly pour eggs over bread/meat in casserole dish. Press mixture down a bit with spatula to ensure eggs are evenly absorbed by the bread.

6. Place casserole dish in preheated oven. Bake for 40-45 min. Or until eggs are set.

We do feed the baby eggs if they are baked at 350 degrees or higher for 30 min or longer. She has no reaction at that point.

http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20121111/HEALTH/121111011/Study-suggests-some-kids-may-overcome-outgrow-egg-allergy?odyssey=nav%7Chead

http://ainotes.wikispaces.com/file/view/Extensively+heated+milk+and+egg+as+oral+immunotherapy+-+Wegrzyn+Curr+Opin+All+Imm+2012.pdf

Mock KFC Biscuits

First off let me say these biscuits are so heavenly delicious i couldn’t wait to share this recipe. I know it is supposed to be “what not to name the baby” and “why i do what not to name the baby” so I hope you can forgive me. I swear on those fronts I have some great stuff but for now back to my adaptation of a really good already gluten free recipe.

When i first began my journey to a gluten free flaky biscuit i started out with these, they are quick and pretty tasty. When i don’t have time to pre-freeze my non dairy butter for my Flaky Layers biscuits I make these. But they weren’t perfect. The minute they loose that hot from the oven so hot you’l nearly burn yourself temperature they get a bit rubbery. The butter makes them more yellow than real KFC biscuits and the use of buttermilk makes them far tangier than  the “real” glutened biscuits. Me being me, set out to fix these short comings especially the rubberiness. That was the biggest issue and the easiest to fix.

Any more than 1/2 tsp of xantham gum per cup of flour makes your baked good rubbery. More than that and they get slippery, more than that down right slimy but only in your mouth. Those deceitful little baked goods will look perfectly edible. Sigh…

Oh and I double the recipe. Doubled i get 12-15 biscuits.

Ingredients

1 c potato starch

1 1/2 c corn starch

2 Tbs baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 tsp xanthan gum

2 Tbs sugar

2/3 c shortening

1 c + 2-4 TBS non-dairy milk

Preheat oven to 375. line baking sheet with parchment paper

In a large mixing bowl, add all dry ingredients. Whisk together until well blended.

Add shortening. It does not have to be cold, room temperature is fine. cut in with pastry cutter or a fork. The result should resemble coarse crumbs.

Slowy add 1 c “milk”.  Continue adding milk up to 4 TBS until dough is very soft , sticky and holds together. This is a very wet dough.

Using very wet hands and spoon drop appx 1/4 c of dough onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Continue dropping mounds until all dough is used.

Bake for 10-12 minutes. remove from oven, flip biscuits and bake for an addition 5 min.

Chocolate cheese cake

Before we get started. This recipe has eggs.  I have no idea how to make this work egg free. I do not think it can. But some one please prove me wrong. 🙂 I am working on a no bake that tastes yummy and does not requires eggs once it is reproducible reliably, I will share.

special equipment 8 in springform pan. I use these.

Ingredients

1 recipe nut based cream cheese

2 Tbs baking cocoa

1/3 c sugar

1 c cartoned coconut milk

3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla

2 tsp lemon juice

Crust ingredients

1 1/2 c gluten-free chocolate graham cracker crumbs. I now use a recipe from Nicole Hunn of Gluen-             free on a shoestring.

6-7 TBS melted non-dairy butter

pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees

First assemble your crust.

In a bowl combine crumbs and melted butter. Toss throughly. press into the bottom of an 8in springform pan. Do not bake.

Filling.

Beat eggs until well mixed. add sugar. Continue beating on medium speed.  Add coconut milk. Continue beating for another 30 seconds or so. Now add nut based cream cheese. Beat until all ingredients are well mixed. Add lemon juice and vanilla. Mix for an additional minute.

The filling should be very liquid like a heavy cream and less like a batter. Separate 1/3 c of batter in a separate bowl. Add 2 TBS baking coco. stir until smooth.

Pour bulk of filling onto crust. Drizzle chocolatey mixture in an ever-increasing spiral over the top of the cheesecake. Once all chocolate mix has been poured take a fork and gently swirl through out.

Bake at 350 fo 40 minutes.

To avoid cracking. Turn the heat off and allow cheesecake to cool in the oven. once cooled place on counter for 30-40 min to cool. Separate sides of springform pan. If it seems to stick run a rubber spatula along the edge to gently separate from side of pan. Cool for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator.

I know what a creative name right?

It was said by someone here that you can not bake with nut based cream cheese. And up til that point all the various recipes I’d used for nu based cream cheese while baking had failed. they added wonderful moisture but ended up with a flat or barely risen product. Sometimes it wouldn’t hold together. some times my end result was flat and kind of grainy.  But I was not to be defeated. This recipe for nut based sour cream led me back to my “test” kitchen to try more variations on cream cheese and voila you have the fruits of my labor.

But you ask why did the previous nut based cream cheeses work? Why is this one different and most importantly does it work every time? will it work for me?

Why it failed. In any given recipe, when making a substitution you must understand the purpose the offending allergen serves, what properties it has, and what alternate best replaces them. The components of cream cheese are Protein.

In any baking recipe Protein provides structure. The structure allows it to hold its shape. it also allows for a lighter texture as the baked good now has the structure necessary to hold up to rising.

Cream cheese has sodium. Sodium is a requirement for leavening. Many years ago I was very anti-salt. I didn’t have it nor any seasonings contains salt in my home. But my pancakes fluffiness was always hit or miss. Then someone took the time to explain how important the 1/8 tsp salt in my pancakes was. The salt has a place in my home ever since and my baked goods (almost) always rise to the occasion.

And cream cheese hat fat a much higher fat content the just milk or cream. Fat is an emulsifier and a method of suspension. It evenly spreads and suspends the ingredients within a batter, when beaten it becomes light and fluffy add flour and it helps the thickening process. Fats can act as a barrier creating the layers required in puff pastry or these biscuits. And it can be a flavorful topping or dip. Fat and the proper amount and ratios of the correct type of fate are important.

Moisture. Cream cheese will add to the moisture content of your recipe. It is a wet ingredient. too much moisture and you baked time never dries out, it has a wet doughy center, not enough and it becomes dry crumbly and just won’t hold together.

In order to use a replacement cream cheese it has to have all of the above and be rather simple to make. If it is hard I am not doing it. I have enough hard stuff to do just being a mom. All of the other nut based recipe’s I’d tried were lacking one or more of the above in the correct ratio.

Now that that’s out of the way….on to cream “Cheese”.

I have only tested this with almonds and pecans, however, it should also work quite well with cashews.

I made my own almond meal by placing the almonds in the blender and grinding them up into a meal or powder. I have also made this using Trader Joe’s brand almond meal. They are interchangeable and premade meal save you a step.

Ingredients

1 c Almond meal

1/2 c cartoned unsweetened coconut milk

1/2 c neutral flavored oil I use canola or regular olive oil (extra virgin has much to strong a flavor)

1/4 scant tsp xanthum gum

1/8 tsp salt

If you don’t have an awesome high-powered blender ( I don’t) you made need to do this half a batch at a time.

Pour the coconut milk in the blender. Turn the blender on at medium high and add the almond meal. Add salt. Once thoroughly blended SLOWLY pour in the oil through the top of the blender. The mixture will begin to emulsify. Once all oil has been added, introduce the xantham gum. Continue blending for about 30 sec-1 min longer.  Stop blender and let mixture rest.

At this point you can use the mix immediately or refrigerate.

This blend works in every recipe I have tried and once refrigerated tastes yummy on a gluten-free bagel.

more baking science

http://www.theelevatedkitchen.com/guides/science-proteins

http://baking911.com/learn/ingredients/fats

Fried green tomatoes!!!

What a simple yummy summer treat, well, if you’re a southern gal or were brought up on southern cooking. Before i go any further I must  add that I do not even like red tomatoes. I dislike the texture in everything besides fresh salsa.  All of my marinara sauces, marinades, and dipping sauces have pureed tomatoes. And the red variety is not welcome in my salad. But take its green under-ripe counter part, fry it up and ……. all a can do is gobble them up! This is not a blog about health food. It is a blog which has parts about delicious foods while eating allergen free.

Yes, these tomatoes are fried.  I have taken a perfectly healthy tomato and fried it.

No, I did not use coconut oil I am much aware that coconut oil is the preferred health oil for frying but it is darned expensive.

Here is my advice if you can afford coconut oil go for it. buy it and live well but if not know that you are doing the best for you family,. The other changes and sacrifices you make in the end are worth so much more than the type of oil used in one recipe.

This recipe comes directly from my mom. And that recipe came from her mom. This recipe has been used for at least 3 generations and today my daughter, Pie, learned how to make fried green tomatoes so hopefully a fourth generation will enjoy this tasty and satisfying treat. I like my fried green tomatoes served with sliced zucchini and green peppers. Just slice ’em up and serve no cooking needed. add that too black-eyed peas and cornbread. OMG we just went to ultimate southern foods medley. LOL.

Today we just had zucchini, bell peppers and rice. We enjoy dipped our veggies in allergen free ranch dressing. ( The Boy prefered hot sauce) That recipe can be found here. Did I not mention that Heidi is awesome?

1 c all-purpose gluten-free flour I prefer Jeanne’s Gluten-Free Flour Mix

1 c cornmeal

1/2 c non-dairy milk

4 green tomatoes

2 eggs

seasonings of your choice we use

2 tsp adobo

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp lemon pepper

1 tsp onion powder

Enough oil to fill a 12 in skillet to about 1/2 in

Heat oil to about 350 degree Farenheit

Slice your tomatoes into slices no thicker the 1/4 in.

Season your all cornmeal to your liking. place in a flat dish, I just use a paper plate. place your all-purpose gluten-free flour in a separate plate. Break the two eggs into a medium bowl and stir well with a fork. Think scrambled eggs. Then pour you milk into the eggs, stir again.

First dredge your sliced tomatoes in the flour. Then dip into milk-egg mixture. Next dredge in cornmeal. Set aside on a plate. Repeat until you plate is full to one layer. Place coated tomatoes, one at a time, into hot oil, fry on one side until golden brown then flip over. Let the other side brown. repeat until all tomatoes are browned. Allow to cool and drain on paper towels.